Breckenridge Texan

Mobile COVID-19 testing site to be set up in Breckenridge on Thursday, April 30

Mobile COVID-19 testing site to be set up in Breckenridge on Thursday, April 30
April 28
07:34 2020

This Thursday, April 30, the Texas National Guard Stephens County will be in Breckenridge to provide free, drive-through COVID-19 testing at a mobile site that will be set up under the awning at The Lighthouse Church at 1509 E. Walker.

The testing will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The testing will be available to anyone who wants it, but there will be a maximum of 100 appointments available. If there is a need for more testing, another session will be set up later. There is no cost for the test.

Stephens County Judge Michael Roach said that the testing will gather the data needed to allow Breckenridge to continue opening up after the coronavirus shutdown. To read more about plans to reopen Texas and Stephens County, click the following link to read the Breckenridge Texan article “Some local, state COVID-19 restrictions to be lifted as state moves toward reopening.”

“Here’s what I’m asking you to do, in order to get to that next phase (of opening up the community), we need to pack that testing facility,” Roach said. “We can’t just have three or four people get tested. That’s not going to be the data they’re looking for, for that long-term opening. We need you, the residents, to sign up … and be tested on Thursday.”

In order to get the test, local citizens must call and make an appointment beginning Wednesday, April 29, at 8 a.m. The original sign up time was set to begin today, Tuesday, April 28; however, according to a news release from Roach on Tuesday morning, the state narrowed the window for registration and citizens will not be able to register until Wednesday.

Although initial information about the testing indicated that participants must have COVID-19 symptoms, Roach said that requirement has been waived and anyone who wants to be tested can get tested, whether or not they have symptoms.

Test results should be available within a few days. If a person tests negative, Roach said, they will receive a “robocall” (automated phone call) from the lab telling them their test is negative. If somebody tests positive, Roach said, they will receive a call from the Texas Department of State Health Services in Fort Worth and have a private conversation on what steps the person needs to take.

The test will determine if a person has an active case of COVID-19 at the time the test was taken. It is not an antibody test that can determine if a person has had the disease in the past and has recovered, Roach said. Antibody testing may be available in the future.

According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, the purpose of the mobile testing is to increase the availability of COVID-19 testing to all areas of Texas. The testing teams are focused on rural areas that have not had access to testing and those that have been identified as “hot spots” where additional testing is needed.

The state requires that testing locations have a paved and covered area for participants to drive through. The Lighthouse church, 1509 E. Walker, has a covered driveway at the front of the building. Roach said drivers will enter the awning from the Jackson Street entrance.

So far, local testing has been conducted on an individual basis by Stephens Memorial Hospital, the Breckenridge Medical Clinic and Resource Care Community Health Center. As of Friday, April 24, there have been 38 tests performed with 1 positive case and 37 negative results.

For more information about Thursday’s testing, click here to read the previous Breckenridge Texan article.

For all of the Breckenridge Texan’s COVID-19 articles, click here to visit the Coronavirus News page.

 

Story by Tony Pilkington and Carla McKeown/Breckenridge Texan

Cutline, top photo: The Lighthouse Church, located at 1509 E. Walker, will be the site of mobile COVID-19 testing on Thursday, April 30. Those wanting to be tested must call the number listed in the story above and make an appointment. (Photo by Tony Pilkington/Breckenridge Texan)

 

Editor’s Note: This story was updated at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, April 28 to reflect revised testing times. It was also updated at 9:40 a.m. to reflect the change in the sign-up date, which was made by the state after the story was originally published.

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